Len Aiyappa fashioned Karnataka Lions' first win in the inaugural Bridgestone World Series Hockey, at the KSHA Stadium here on Tuesday. Lions, thanks to Aiyappa's hat-trick, beat Chandigarh Comets 3-2.
Jude Felix's boys roared ahead to 3-0 in the first 25 minutes. Len Aiyappa, who was off colour against Bhopal Badshahs on Monday, was a picture of confidence, converting the first penalty corner in the 11th minute.
In the 18th minute, a move by Antil saw an infringement inside the circle and Aiyappa came up with a brilliant drag-flick. Ravipal Singh, who orchestrated many a Lions foray and was voted Player-of-the-Match, was obstructed inside the circle in the 25th minute and Aiyappa again made no mistake.
In the third and fourth quarters, ace Pakistan midfielder Rehan Butt began Chandigarh's fightback, feeding Bharat Chhikara to finish a quick counterattack in the 38th minute.
Chhikara was once again at it, reducing the lead through a fine reverse hit. But the Lions just hung on.
The result: Karnataka Lions 3 (Len Aiyappa 3) bt Chandigarh Comets 2 (Bharat Chhikara 2).
Keywords: World Series Hockey